We report the discovery of a faint Hα pulsar wind nebula (PWN) powered by the radio pulsar B0740-28. The characteristic bow-shock morphology of the PWN implies a direction of motion consistent with the previously measured velocity vector for the pulsar. The PWN has a flux density more than an order of magnitude lower than for the PWNe seen around other pulsars, but, for a distance 2 kpc, it is consistent with propagation through a medium of atomic density nH ∼ 0.25 cm-3, and neutral fraction of 1%. The morphology of the PWN in the area close to the pulsar is distinct from that in downstream regions, as is also seen for the PWN powered by PSR B2224+65. In particular, the PWN associated with PSR B0740-28 appears to close at its rear, suggesting that the pulsar has recently passed through a transition from low density to high density ambient gas. The faintness of this source underscores that deep searches are needed to find further examples of optical pulsar nebulae.
- ISM: general
- Pulsars: individual: B0740-28